Day #4 - May 21, 2004
I woke up early, made my daily Starbucks run and met with the team manager to take care of some errands. The team had the morning off since our practice wasn't scheduled until the afternoon.
The team continued to follow our women's team online as they went up against the Miami Hurricanes in the NCAA quarterfinals. Both Miami's Head Coach and No. 1 sngles/doubles player are former Bruins which makes it just a little more intense! Our women's team pulled out a come-from-behind thriller winning 4-3 to advance to the Final Four. Congrats again to them and we wish them all the luck tomorrow against the Clemson Tigers.
Before our final practice session prior to the start of play tomorrow, I went to the routine coaches' meeting at 4:00 p.m. to go over some tournament rules and issues. We stretched indoors and then got in a short hit at the indoor facility. In case of rain or heavy, irregular wind patterns, competition will be moved indoors. This gave us an opportunity to test out these courts so we would be use to them in case we did have to play indoors. The team finished practice outdoors doing some doubles drills and the players mainly focused on just fine tuning their games. Every player has a different practice routine the day before a match - something that works for them. We showered at the tennis complex because the tournament banquet began 7:00 p.m. It was held on-campus at their nearby student center. Even though the banquet is casual attire, I still couldn't recognize some familiar people after only seeing them in tennis clothes! The evening ended with a guest speaker from Oklahoma City, a video slide show of all the teams in the event and a short performance by the cast of the Broadway hit, Oklahoma.
After the Banquet, we headed back to the hotel to catch the second half of the Timberwolves/Lakers opening game. After the game, we had our daily team meeting in preparation for our match against Texas A&M.
We have had several good days of practice and I feel the team is ready. Let the games begin!!
PS- Don't forget that you will be able to check online at www.tulsahurricanes.com for live scoring and to go to the UCLA athletic webpage for daily picture gallery and the chat wrap with Alberto!